The UGBC will receive $595,000 for the 2012-2013 academic year, according to a recently released budget report. Each of the four branches of the UGBC-Cabinet, Senate, the AHANA Leadership Council (ALC), and the GLBTQ Leadership Council (GLC)-reported increases in budget from the 2011-2012 academic year.
The budget is derived from the student activities fee, which rose this year to $304 per student per year.
“The UGBC budget is determined by the vice president of student affairs office, and our total budget rises proportionally to the student activities fee,” said Molly McCarthy, vice president of Senate and A&S ’14. “This year, the student activities fee rose, and thus, our budget did as well.”
The Cabinet, which receives the most significant portion of the funds, will receive $352,550 for the year. The ALC, with the second most, will receive $101,890. The GLC and Senate will receive $40,110 and $26,000, respectively.
To determine how the money in each branch gets budgeted, the presidents and vice presidents of the four branches receive budget requests from their individual department directors. Each of the directors submits requests for events or programs that they hope to put on during the year. After all of the requests have been submitted, the heads of each branch evaluate each request and determine allocations to each department.
“The presidents and vice presidents of ALC, Cabinet, GLC, and Senate spent a considerable amount of time together this summer working through the budget, so that major budgetary decisions could be discussed across all four branches,” McCarthy said.
The collaboration between branches was meant to increase the unity of the organization as a whole. McCarthy, who also served as budget committee chair, was able to report back to members of the Senate.
“As budget committee chair, I was also charged with presenting the budget to the Senate for approval,” McCarthy said. “During this process, it was helpful to be able to provide the senators with information regarding how the budgetary decisions were made.”
For the 2012-2013 year, the campus entertainment department of Cabinet, one of the most visible departments in the UGBC, will receive $245,000.
A significant change from last year’s budget was the allocation of funds specifically for BC to Boston, rather than having their budget come from the student life department in Cabinet. This year, BC to Boston will receive $23,000. “The increase in funding is extremely warranted because BC2Boston has performed so well in the past,” the budget committee’s report read.
The ALC, whose budget increased by 2 percent this year, reported an increase in funding for the programming department of almost $4,000.
The GLC’s budget increased by 29 percent for the 2012-2013 academic year, the highest increase of any branch.
McCarthy said one of the major goals of the budget committee is responsibility with the funds entrusted to them on behalf of the students.
“In general, we strive for fiscal responsibility, as the UGBC budget comes directly from the student activities fund,” McCarthy said. “We want these funds to reach as many students as possible over the course of the academic year.”
The budget committee does not determine the amount of money allocated to each department, but provides recommendations for future budgets.
This year, the budget committee recommended a reevaluation of Ice Jam, which, they said, “has not been widely attended over the past two years.” By decreasing the funding to Ice Jam, the report stated the committee’s hope that Campus Entertainment would revamp the event for the coming year.
In addition, the committee recommended “a more unified approach to public relations.” Due to the increasing collaboration between departments and branches on large scale, cosponsored events, the committee recommended a more unified public relations body to serve the entire organization.
Overall, the budget committee concluded that the year’s budget was “a fiscally responsible allocation of student funds.”
“I think one of the major strengths of this year’s budget is that the heads of branches were realistic,” McCarthy said. “If an event hadn’t been performing well in the past, then they decreased its funding to make room for new, more innovative events.”